KABUL, Afghanistan — A deadly earthquake hit northern Afghanistan and Pakistan on Monday afternoon, registering a preliminary magnitude of 7.5 and causing heavy damage in one of the world’s most impoverished and war-torn regions.
At least 122 people were reported killed, with 100 or more of them in Pakistan, and that figure seemed likely to rise significantly, officials in both countries said.
The quake, which struck at 1:39 p.m., was centered in the Hindu Kush mountain range, about 28 miles southwest of the district of Jurm in Afghanistan and about 160 miles northeast of Kabul, the Afghan capital. The quake’s depth was reported at 132 miles, the United States Geological Survey said, and its effects were felt as far away as New Delhi.
People poured into the streets of Kabul, where buildings shook for at least two minutes, and similar scenes played out in Islamabad and Peshawar in Pakistan. Officials in both countries declared emergencies, and military units were ordered to join the response.
In Pakistan, provincial authorities in Peshawar said at least 63 people had been killed in surrounding Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Province. Severe tolls were also expected in other remote regions of the north, including in the Federally Administrated Tribal Areas, but no immediate confirmation of exact numbers was available because of a breakdown in communications systems.
Reverberations were felt across several provinces in Afghanistan, particularly in northern areas that had already been in turmoil because of a widespread Taliban offensive. There, too, the shaking damaged communication lines, making initial damage difficult to assess.
In Islamabad, the Pakistani capital, people ran out into the open as the earthquake rattled the city. Panic was widespread in neighborhoods with high-rises and multistory apartment blocks, and hundreds of shopkeepers and customers swarmed the main avenue in Blue Area, a commercial neighborhood.
In the northern city of Peshawar, Mehreen Ali, 30, a dentist, said she was sitting in a car outside a shopping plaza when the vehicle started shaking.
“I thought the car was shaking as the driver was leaning against it,” Ms. Ali said. “Then suddenly, people started coming out of the building in front. People were staring at the building as if it was about to fall as it shook.”
In the northern valley of Swat, at least 35 people were killed, local officials said. At least 100 houses were damaged.
Shazia Bibi, 34, said a wall of her house collapsed, injuring her on the head and back. “I was rushing out of the house when the wall collapsed,” Ms. Bibi said from a hospital bed.
Zahir Shah, a resident of Mingora in Swat Valley, said he was sitting in a vehicle with a friend when buildings around them started to shake. They quickly sped away and into an open area for safety. Mr. Shah said he could not reach his relatives in remote areas of the valley as mobile and landline phones were not working.
Hospital officials in Swat said at least 250 people had been brought in for treatment by Monday evening.
Landslides were reported in the mountainous Pakistani regions of Gilgit and Chitral, as boulders fell on to the roads, cutting off many areas. Damage was reported in more central parts of the country as well: In Punjab Province, at least 10 people were wounded when a school wall collapsed in the city of Sargodha.